Perhaps the most essential teachings given to us by Jesus came in the final year of his life on earth. Known as the "I AM" statements and found in the Gospel of John and the Gnostic Gospel of Thomas, these radical truths were offered to connect each one of us to the original source of Jesus' deeper power. But to fully grasp and embody these profound insights, teaches Dr. Neil Douglas-Klotz, we must hear them in Jesus' native tongue.
On I AM: The Secret Teachings of the Aramaic Jesus, we accompany Dr. Douglas-Klotz on a journey to the Holy Land of Jesus' time. With him, we will learn 22 specific meditations that combine music, Aramaic chant, and breath-awareness practices to attune us to Jesus' words and help us "become fountains of healing and inspiration, as Jesus was."
©2012 Sounds True (P)2012 Sounds True
This book opened my eyes to a Jesus that I always knew had to exist, but I had never heard of before. It helped me to bridge the gap between what is true in my heart, and what I learned in Sunday school and church. I will listen to this again.
This is another excellent addition to the catalog of work by Aramaic scholar, Sufi teacher, and mystic Neil Douglas-Klotz. For those unfamiliar with his work, Douglas-Klotz basically goes back to the original Aramaic words of Jesus and explains/elaborates on (often in great detail) their various levels of meaning, revealing a rich tapestry of mystical wisdom in the process. In "I Am" and Neil's other programs (The Hidden Gospel, Original Prayer, Healing Breath) we come to know Jesus as the real, Semitic, "Middle Eastern" person and teacher that he was -- deep, passionate (and compassionate), brilliant, creative, occasionally funny, and profoundly mystical. Christians and non-Christians alike stand to gain much from this reading of Jesus' teachings.
In all of his programs, Douglas-Klotz intersperses songs, chants, and meditations throughout the teaching, as a way to deepen, embody, and integrate the insights/knowledge being shared. This approach is consistent with Sufi teaching styles, and is also seen in the approaches of Judaic and Christian mystics. Multitasking listeners may find it distracting or frustrating, as you can't stop to perform the meditations while driving, exercising, or doing chores; other listeners will likely find it greatly enhances their learning.
A final note about Neil's performance as a reader/speaker. A previous reviewer complained that Neil's voice is "effeminate". Setting aside the implication that there is only one rigid, gender-based way for men in our culture to speak (not to mention the comment's not-so-subtle prejudicial overtones), I'm not sure how this listener defines "effeminate". Douglas-Klotz is a scholar, teacher, lecturer, and fluent speaker of English and Aramaic. As such, he clearly enunciates his words. He speaks kindly, deliberately, and intelligently; his tone is cheerful and encouraging. He does not sound like he just came from a NASCAR race, frat party, a night out with the guys at Hooters, or an event sponsored by the Southern Baptist Convention...maybe that equals "effeminate" in the minds of Americans these days, I don't know. To my non-southern, bi-national US/Canadian ears, Neil Douglas-Klotz simply sounds like a nice guy.
I loved the concept. The author's idea is excellent. To hear how the original Jesus might have sounded resonated deep within me.
No, I found his singing annoying after a while. Though I listened to the entire book because I felt he was deeply sincere about his message.
No, listen for yourself. Their is a lot to be learned here and it may resonate with another in a much more positive manner.
Absolutely, this is a good representation on what Jeshua actually said (and didn't say), within the cultural context of the society he was a part of.
I highly recommend this book, the chants and meditations interspersed are a really nice bonus too!
Audible needs to put some of his ridiculous meditative chants in the sample listen. Also, I guess I should have picked up on this when listening to the sample, but the reader (and author) has a very effeminate speech pattern that is incredibly distracting. So distracting that I can only listen in small doses. Such a pity because the content is very interesting. Without a working knowledge of Aramaic, I don't know how much is fact, opinion, or conjecture. But his interpretations are nonetheless intellectually and spiritually stimulating.
This would be a 5+ star book if a professional reader were reading and the chants were separated into their own (skippable) chapters.
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